The Spotlight On Raw- 11/16/2015

Last Night WWE Raw emanated live from Greenville, SC and it was quite the newsworthy show to say the least.  Most people will probably remember this Raw for the final segment involving Paige and Charlotte as it was probably the most controversial segment in WWE, I’d say, since CM Punk faked the heart attack to mock Jerry Lawler back in 2013.  We’re going to get into that and a whole lot more in the highlights section below so let’s get right into it.

Highlights:

Divas Get The Spotlight: So I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I was a fan of Reid Flair’s death being brought into the storylines because I’m never a fan of that stuff, it’s pretty tasteless.  What happened to Reid was a real tragedy and I don’t think any one needs to be reminded of something like that while watching an episode of Raw.  That said, I’m sure that WWE got the blessing from both Charlotte and Ric to go ahead with the storyline and I’d think that Ric is old school in the belief that nothing is off limits in wrestling (much like comedy).  The main part of this that I do want to focus on, because we try to bring you the positive, is that WWE made a concerted effort to focus on the Divas last night.  They showed highlights of the Paige and Charlotte feud throughout the night and really made their contract signing at the end of the night feel like a big deal.  As for the contract signing itself, it was great to see the Divas get the final segment on Raw for the first time in over a year (I believe Stephanie McMahon and Brie Bella got that segment in August of 2014).  I also liked the fire and intensity of the brawl that the two had around the ring.  If nothing else, you really believed that Charlotte wanted to kill Paige at the end of the show and I’m more excited for their match now then I was prior to Raw.

Tournament Matches Deliver:  Usually I give you that one match to go out of your way to watch but this week I had a hard time doing that because I really enjoyed each one of the tournament matches.  Each one of the matches went over 10 minutes and were split up into two segments.  I liked that it seemed like each superstar in the matches was giving it their all as it made the World Title really feel like “the richest prize in the sport”.  Roman Reigns and Cesaro had an unbelievable match that saw so many reversals and nearfalls and while you figured Roman was probably going to win, they had to have made you feel that at least for a second that Cesaro had him.   Right behind that I thought that Kevin Owens and Neville tore the house down and I’ll tell you this, say what you will about Kevin Owens’ weight but he hung in their with Neville move for move and never looked even a step behind.  I also really enjoyed the Ambrose-Ziggler match and thought it was great to see Ambrose get to cut a promo after the match about what he would do if he won the title (he remains my choice to take the whole thing).  Lastly, while it was never in doubt that Del Rio was going to win, I liked that they gave Kalisto a couple of near falls.  Every tournament needs a fun cinderella underdog to get behind (Crash Holly in 2000!) and Kalisto played that role real well. It was interesting to see that Sin Cara was nowhere to be found tonight and left me wondering if perhaps, they’re going to give Kalisto a shot as single.

The Druids Rise:  I don’t have too much to say about the actual angle between the Wyatts and Brothers of Destruction but I loved the way that Raw kicked off with that classic Undertaker entrance with the druids and both Kane and Undertaker coming to the ring to kick off Raw. It was cool to see Undertaker giving a classic promo and I’m not too sure how many more times we’re going to get to see that entrance, so I’m enjoying it while I can.

Class:  I usually limit this piece to three highlights but I have to give WWE a bit of a kudos for paying respect to the horrible tragedy that happened in Paris this past week.  WWE always handles these things with the utmost class and it was nice to see all of the superstars and divas on entrance ramp to start Raw and paying their respects to the victims of these heinous attacks.

Well that is going to do it for me right now but I will be back a whole lot more wrestling content throughout the week as we continue to countdown to the Survivor Series on Sunday.  I’ll be taking a look at each one of the different Undertaker Specials that are currently on the WWE Network as a part of Undertaker week as well as also continuing to go through my Survivor Series Retrospective, looking at each one of the different Survivor Series events of the past year.  Stay tuned for all of that and be sure to give us a follow over on our twitter @daily_spotlight.

The Spotlight on Raw 11/09/2015

WWE Monday Night Raw just went off the air emanating live from Machester, Great Britain and I honestly thought it was a pretty strong show.  We found out 2 quarterfinal matches for the WWE World Title Tournament as Roman Reigns will take on Cesaro and Dean Ambrose will take on Dolph Ziggler in two unique, fresh matches.  Aside from that I also really enjoyed some of the other build for the Survivor Series as WWE is really making it feel like one of the big four shows, at least in my opinion.  Let’s get right into some of the highlights on the show.

Highlights:

1) The Brothers Of Destruction Are Back–  This one I’ll probably get a little flack for but I really enjoyed the ending of Raw with the returns of both the Undertaker and Kane.  I also appreciated that, for the second week in a row, they continued to show old school clips of both the Undertaker and Kane to really point out how big of a deal what Bray Wyatt had done was.  Say what you will about the hokeyness of the last segment with the lightning and the special effects but that’s part of what I love about wrestling.  Whoever said wrestling had to be so serious?  Furthermore, the crowd absolutely lost their minds when the Undertaker and Kane came out and they ate up the staredown with the Wyatt Family showering the ring with “This Is Awesome” Chants.  Some of the folks on twitter seem a bit upset that Undertaker and Kane left the Wyatts laying but the Wyatts had done the same over the past few weeks.  Now there is still one last Raw before Survivor Series to see how the Wyatts regroup. I’m hooked into this one, can’t wait to see where they go next.

2) The Tournament–  I really enjoyed the way that they did the first round of the tournament throughout the night while leaving three more of the first round matches for Smackdown.  By spacing out the matches throughout the night, this gave the viewers reason to remain engaged in the show all night and I felt the tournament matches made the show go by pretty fast for a 3 hour show.  As for the tournament matches,  I felt that Dolph Ziggler and The Miz had a good match and especially felt that Dean Ambrose and Tyler Breeze had a good long match. I didn’t feel like Breeze lost anything by losing because he hung in there with Ambrose for so long and simply got caught by a rollup.  The shock of the tournament so far, for me, was seeing Cesaro pick of a win over Sheamus (with a nice little assist from Rooney!).  I assumed that Sheamus would get the win to set up a face-heel match with Roman.  Instead we’re going to get Roman vs. Cesaro in a really intriguing match between two fan favorites.

3) The New Day-  The New Day was in rare form tonight and hysterical by dropping in disses on Harry Potter and talking about how they really outdid themselves.  They remain a highlight on every show they’re apart of and I was glad that they mentioned not being a part of the tournament because that;s the first thing I thought when I saw the bracket as well.  As for the six man featuring the New Day against The Usos and Neville, it was the match of the night as all six of them busted their hides with high flying moves at every turn and Neville even getting a “Holy Shit” chant due to his Red Arrow off the top to the outside.  Go out of your way to watch that match, it was great.

Closing Thoughts

Overall, the crowd deserves some credit here because they were great throughout the night and gave Raw a really unique feel to it.  One of the first things I thought from watching the crowd was “Wow NXT: Takeover is going to be the best!”  I can’t wait for that show.

In closing, we also found out that next week on the WWE Network it will be Undertaker week leading into the Survivor Series and his 25th Anniversary.  Ironically, it will also be Undertake week here on the daily spotlight as I’ll be counting down my top 25 favorite Undertaker moments of all time.  Hopefully, my piece will act as a good companion piece to Undertaker week on the Network.  The WWE Network alwasy does a good job with their themed weeks and I’m sure next week will be no different.

Well that’s going to do it for me tonight but if you haven’t done so I’ve posted the first part of my Survivor Series Retrospective looking at the first 9 years of the Survivor Series from 1987-1995, so be sure to check that out.  Until then, what was some of your favorite moments from Raw?  What did you think of the Brothers of Destruction returning to Raw?

The Spotlight On Raw for 8/10/2015

Monday Night Raw emanated live from Everett, Washington last night and I found the show to be quite enjoyable.  WWE is steadfast on the road to Summerslam and we found out a few more of the matches for the “Biggest Event Of The Summer”.  Let’s get right into some of the highlights on the show.

Highlights:

The MVP Of The Night: Goes to Randy Orton!  Orton not only competed in two different matches for over 30 minutes of the night but he was on absolute fire having the top two matches of the night.  The guy is just so fluid in the ring and I don’t think it’s possible for him to have a bad match.  Orton first competed in a number one contender triple threat match against both Cesaro and Kevin Owens.  The three men pulled out all the stops until Orton pulled out the win laying out both men with an RKO in about 18 minutes.  This led to Orton getting a title match later in the evening against Seth Rollins for the World Heavyweight Championship and those two had another great match.  Orton and Rollins have undeniable in ring chemistry and go so fast in the ring, they may very well be the two best in ring performers in WWE today.  There were so many near falls that I started to think that Orton was going to win the championship, especially after the impressive RKO out of nowhere.  Sheamus costing Orton the championship win did a good job of presenting Sheamus as a despicable heel.  That said, I then actually thought Sheamus was going to cash in and win the championship in his own right.  A great non finish there and this continues the program between Orton and Sheamus heading into Summerslam.  That said, with Orton and Sheamus both having the champion beat, you could theoretically have a believable three way in the works if John Cena can’t go at Summerslam.  I expect Cena to be there, after all he is Big Match John, but it’s good to know there’s a believable back up match if he can’t go.  Of course, if Cena can go, then there’s a great match in place for Orton and Sheamus with a ton of momentum behind them after last night.  All around good stuff overall.

Miz TV- I absolutely loved the Miz TV segment last night in so many ways.  Between his work on tough enough and his work in the ring, really since the Mizdow stuff, the miz has been on quite a roll.  To me, he is getting closer to the level he was at in 2011, when he was in the main event of WrestleMania, then he’s been in quite some time.  As for this particular segment, it was, first off, great to see Daniel Bryan get a chance to shine in front of his hometown crowd and good to see Bryan back on Raw in general.   It’s amazing that, this day in age with books being so much less popular, that Bryan’s book is a New York Times bestseller and it’s good to see him getting the attention he deserves for this feat.  I also felt Bryan did a good job in not backing down from the Miz but using what the Miz was doing, in putting him down, to focus that onto Miz’s current opponents for Summerslam.  Lastly, Ryback’s return came off very well as he looked about ready to kill the Miz.  After this segment, i not only wanted to see Daniel Bryan return to get revenge on the Miz for his remarks but also can’t wait to see the triple threat match at Summerslam for the intercontinental championship between the Miz, Ryback and The Big Show.

Celebrities Done Right- The third highlight this week, and it was tough as there was a lot I liked about this show, goes out to Stephen Amell.  It’s a strange comparison but to me this reminded me of the way Lawrence Taylor was used prior to Wrestlemania 11 in that Amell was referenced a few times throughout the night as being a guest until being baited by a Stardust pie shove.  In the end, I like that Amell knows getting into a WWE ring is going to be very tough but feels like he has no choice because he has to defend himself.  Triple H was great in also looking at Amell like he had a death wish and demanding lawyers give him signed documents before agreeing to let Amell compete at Summerslam.  There was also added intrigue by Triple H announcing Amell as Arrow, getting you to think Amell may appear at Summerslam in character.  In the end, my favorite part of this is that WWE is using Amell’s appearance to help give a bit of spotlight (pun intended) to King Barrett, Stardust and Neville.

Closing Thoughts

It’s not easy to have three hours go by so fast that you’re left wanting more but, for me, Raw did that this week.  Aside from the highlights mentioned, I also really enjoyed the New Day segments, those guys continue to get the most of their new roles and they’ve been a joy to watch.  The same thing can be said for the Divas who looked great again this week and had the crowd hooked their entire time out there.  Lastly, I also liked that Undertaker and Brock Lesnar were both not on the show this week.  Thier brawl was so good coming out of Battleground that it makes sense to hold both of them away from one another until their big showdown for the final Raw before Summerslam next week.

That’s going to do it for me this week but coming up later today I’ll have coverage of the Undertaker, Brock Lesnar special that aired on the WWE Network right after Raw last night.  Until then, what were your thoughts on Raw?  Did you are agree with my highlights of the show?  Let me know in the comments section below and be sure to hit the subscribe button so you can get continued coverage of all of the reviews right here at thedailyspotlight.com